Saturday, July 5, 2008

Happy Campers (and a tired Mommy!)

The kids and I have just returned from a week at camp -- UCYC in Prescott, Arizona. Those of you who know me, know that I LOVE camp....LOVE it...and so I was thrilled for Wade to take time off to keep Cate as I packed my sleeping bag (and three others) and headed to camp with my big kids! I must say that camp at 40 is a bit different that camp at 20...but we had a blast and I have to share:

Almost immediately upon arriving at UCYC, I began to feel overwhelmed that many of the activities would be highly UN-accessible. As a result, I was feeling defeated before we had even begun. And then I remembered to pray. Oh, the power of prayer! The first activity my boys' cabin did was the rock wall. Impossible for them, right? Wrong. Because God had provided an amazing staff that I had not accounted for...Adam strapped himself and Mason in and together they climbed...with Adam walking Mason through and...

As you can see, men from our church, helping at the bottom. It was amazing! And it didn't end there...

They got Benjamin strapped in too! Adam and our men had to work harder...but Benjamin got to experience the rock wall!! And as Adam so adequately made the campers shout while climbing -- they got to experience how "Our God Rocks!"

Claire was a happy camper as well -- she rode the zip-line, took part in a Mud Obstacle Course (yes, that is my girly-girl under all that mud) and loved every minute. But can I tell you how cool God is....this sweet girl of mine has listened to my camp stories all her life. If you know her at all, you know that she loves stories more than anything and so she is always all ears. So, she was set for camp believing that she would ride (like I did at 9 to Camp Garaywa) an old school bus and sing camp songs at the top of her lungs. So you can imagine her disappointment when we arrived at church on Monday only to find CCV had chartered beautiful, comfortable buses to take the 400 campers/counselors to camp. And worst of one sang with my girl all the way there. She was so sad. But rallied and was enjoying camp nonetheless. And then God did the coolest thing. It started to rain and we were in the upper camp with a huge downpour and needed to get to the lower camp for dinner. All of a sudden an old painted school bus was waiting outside of our cabin to save us from the rain. As all these girls gratefully loaded...the bus driver informed them that there was a price to ride....they had to sing and sing loud! Can you believe it? This girl of mine was grinning from ear to ear...and hasn't stopped!! What a great lesson for her to learn that God cares about the little things!!

Our hearts were already full to bursting. The kids were learning that we serve an awesome God. And then the staff asked my permission to do something with my boys....

Because there were some activities that just couldn't be adapted...they wanted to give them a special treat. With my blessing (and a bit of trepidation on my part), they took Benjamin and Mason to the BIG zip line, reserved for junior high and high school campers. This zip line requires a considerable climb up a rock wall. These incredible men strapped my boys into a harness, formed a pulley line and PULLED them to the top of the wall. I could not help but envision the men who took their paralyzed friend through the roof to get to Jesus. It was quite an emotional moment for me as I watched my guys be raised to the platform.

But the story just kept getting better....when their fellow campers (who were in the pool at the time) realized what was happening they all gathered at the pool fence. Now, this was an activity that they were not allowed to by rights, they could have been pretty bummed that Benjamin and Mason got to...but instead they began to chant their names, louder and louder, cheering them on in this huge adventure. It was more than I could take...even now, tears are rolling down my face.

Mason was grinning from ear to ear...Benjamin who (as you can see) did an upside-superman flight had to hang there for a while before the men could grab his rope and get him to the ladder to come down...and when we finally got him there, he was smiling so big and looked at me and said, "I just had some serious prayer time, Mommy!"

What an adventure and what a lesson of love these men taught my boys! It will stay with them for their entire lives!!

Now, we are home....stinky clothes and all. I am ready for a real shower, and my muscles may not recover for some time...but Praise God for being a God who cares, who places JUST the right people in our lives at just the right time, who doesn't just teach us with hard lessons, but more often teaches us in the coolest, most unbelievable ways!


Sarah Armstrong said...

What a mighty God we serve! This just brought tears to my eyes. I am reminded that God is able to do "exceedingly and abundantly more than we can ask or imagine." So often our minds sell him short in what He can accomplish! Thanks for the post - what a blessing!

stripes510 said...

What an incredible story!! It brought tears to my eyes as well as everyone else who reads this, I'm sure. Was this a camp with your church? How amazing! God is such an Awesome God. Thank you for sharing with all of us.

Heather said...

Wow! I too have tears and can't see well through them at this moment! SO GREAT to see they boys on that zip line! Good is so good!!! Love you!